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Pharmacy support staff

Pharmacy support staff

Pharmacy support staff refers to staff within the pharmacy team who are not registered with us but are involved in pharmacy services at or from a registered pharmacy. It includes pharmacy staff such as dispensers and medicines counter assistants, commonly referred to as ‘support staff’, as well as pharmacy managers.

Seeking views on the draft requirements for the education and training of pharmacy support staff

The GPhC has updated its requirements for the education and training of support staff to make sure they continue to have the necessary knowledge, attitudes and behaviours to provide safe and effective care to people using pharmacy services. 

You can find our proposals here.

We held engagement meetings and ran a survey on our proposals between 26 June and 23 August 2019. 

We are currently analysing the feedback we received about our proposals. Thank you to all who provided feedback. 

We have also compiled a list of frequently asked questions about our draft requirements.

Pharmacy support staff

As well as accrediting courses for pharmacists and pharmacy technicians, we also accredit training courses for pharmacy support staff. Dispensing/pharmacy assistants and medicines counter assistants must have undertaken the appropriate training.

Dispensing/pharmacy assistant

A dispensing assistant (or pharmacy assistant) is involved in a range of duties within the pharmacy. They work under the supervision of a pharmacist and assist the pharmacist and pharmacy technician in the dispensing process. A dispensing/pharmacy assistant might work in a hospital pharmacy or community pharmacy and have varying roles and responsibilities.

Medicines counter assistant

A medicines counter assistant is involved in the sale of over-the-counter medicines and works under the supervision of a pharmacist. They are trained to offer advice on common ailments and must know when to refer a customer to a pharmacist.